Spotlight Movie // Pearl Harbor

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Review: Pearl Harbor
  • Pearl Harbor (Grade: D+) — Director Michael Bay might see "Pearl Harbor" as a respectful celebration of courage, but the only things this film reveres are pyrotechnics and gloss. Reviewed by Brian Orndorf.
    Posted: 05/23/01

  • Pearl Harbor: Let the Hype Begin!
      Now that the first hints of spring are arriving across the land (except in New England, where it's still butt cold), pondering summer releases doesn't hurt quite so much.

    The pondering has been encouraged in recent weeks by slick advertising for Michael Bay's "Pearl Harbor" (May 25). Most have probably seen the jaw-dropping trailer making the rounds during prime time television, but if you haven't, put those broadband pipes to good use and download this fine piece of advertising (Quicktime required). Even if the film sucks like a hungry anteater, that trailer will be remembered as a classic.

    Taking a cue from the trailer, the "Pearl Harbor" marketing department has also released a series of frame-worthy posters, including a recently-issued set of four theatre sheets that pay homage to WWII-era military ads (see below).

    affleck beckinsale gooding hartnett
    Ben Affleck Kate Beckinsale Cuba Gooding, Jr. Josh Hartnett

    The promotional materials are impressive, but "Pearl Harbor" isn't a sure thing. The film takes a page from the "Titanic" playbook by setting a love story amidst a well-known historical event. "Titanic" made money and nabbed Oscars, but a mere mention can summon hatred in the most lethargic of moviegoers. Furthermore, "Pearl Harbor's" director, Michael Bay, is best known for numbing action fare like "The Rock" and "Armageddon." Crappy dialogue and gaping plot holes are excusable in fictional stories about the end-time, but now that Bay is testing history — and assuming the responsibility that comes with such a project — he'll be held to a higher standard.

    But enough with this naysaying! Until the movie unspools we can bask in the unattainable expectations. Happy hyping!

    More on "Pearl Harbor"
    Cinemenium's Unofficial Pearl Harbor Site
    So much "Pearl Harbor" stuff you'll think you've enlisted.

    Official Site
    Interactive whizz-bang movie stuff.
    News and commentary.

    Coming Attractions
    Even more news and commentary.

    Posted: 04/03/01

    "Pearl Harbor" to Mix Romance and Trauma in May 2001
      Michael Bay, the subtle director behind "Armageddon" and "The Rock," is currently working on a "historical" love story titled "Pearl Harbor." The movie, set in the early-40s, focuses on two male friends who both have their leering eye on the same comely young woman. The three youngins' deal with their love-triangle angst in traditional pre-WWII fashion until a squadron of Japanese pilots swoops in and bombs the hell out of Pearl Harbor. This, as you'd expect, screws up everyone's plans. It sounds like a typical historical drama, but seeing as this film is set for a Memorial Day 2001 release you can bet that Bay's explosions and action sequences will be fueled by a big-time budget. You can also anticipate ear-pounding noise and plenty of extended, poster-ready shots of star Ben Affleck. Josh Harnett ("Halloween: H20") and Kate Beckinsale ("Brokedown Palace"), make up the other 2 pieces of the film's love tripod and Alec Baldwin, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Tom Sizemore and Jon Voight are also listed among the cast. For more information, including pictures from the production and a teaser trailer, check out Coming Attractions and Cinemenium.
    Posted: 7/29/00